Schools: Chess Champs; Master Teachers Named

Northport students finished first recently in the Suffolk County Chess League County Championship Tournament.

The team contended against a competitive field of players from schools including Hauppauge H.S., Sachem, Half Hollow Hills East  and the Stony Brook School.
Varsity members included Bryan Avila, Maxim Nikitorov, Kristian Schuchman, Donovan Fishcer, and Timothy Leon, and JV members Ryan Kattau and John McGrath participated as well. Maxim Nikitorov tied for 2nd place in individual scoring.


New Master Teachers

 Four teachers  from the Half Hollow Hills district have been selected as part of the statewide group of 230 educators joining the New York State Master Teacher Program this year. These new Master Teachers join  over 1,400 public school teachers throughout the state who share a passion for their own STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) learning and for collaborating with colleagues to inspire the next generation of STEM leaders.

The teachers are:

  • Jason Braun, science teacher, Half Hollow Hills High School East
  • Thomas Ciolfi, math teacher, Half Hollow Hills High School East
  • Nannette O’Grady, math teacher, Half Hollow Hills High School West
  • Danielle Reed, 4th grade teacher, Signal Hill Elementary School

During their four years  in the program, they receive an annual stipend while engaging in peer mentoring and intensive content-oriented professional development opportunities throughout the academic year. Master Teachers also work closely with pre-service and early career teachers to foster a supportive environment for the next generation of STEM teachers, and participate in and lead several professional development sessions each year.

Day of Jazz

The  Harborfields High School Jazz Band recently participated in SCMEA’s annual Day of Jazz. The band performed an adjudication set and worked with two-time Grammy-nominated drummer/composer Dan Pugach, and also took part in a side-by-side, play-a-long workshop with the One More Once Big Band.

“Being steeped in a subject matter is often the best way to learn, and this event helps with that process by putting students in direct contact with established jazz musicians,” said jazz band director Dan Bilawsky. “We took a lot away from our wonderful experiences at SCMEA’s Day of Jazz.”

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